Ibn Abbas (Allah be pleased with him) reportedly quotes from the Prophet (s):
“Whoever has no pity for the young and does not respect the old is not one of us.”1
When you see a baby crying, your heart is sympathetic and you feel kind. You begin to joke and play with the baby in order to stop its crying.
It may also happen that you help and be kind to a small child who is lost in the market or cannot find its family.
Surely, these moral attitudes are among those of the faithful whom Allah and His Messenger love most. The believer is the one whose heart is full of mercy for people, especially the needy and the oppressed, and small children, as they are the most vulnerable and weak and are in need of our help. So, if we give them our help and assistance, surely Allah will be pleased with us and will help us in this world by making our lives successful, and will also have mercy upon us in the Hereafter.
Our Prophet (s) teaches us to be kind to the young, and respect the old.
You may have your grandfather, grandmother or one of your relatives living in your home, and see that they have grown old and are unable to do much, and are in need of help and assistance. Our Prophet enjoins us to respect such people and if they are in need of something to help them. If they ask us, we should bring them food and drink, help them reach where they want to go, and get the things which they need.
When we sit with old people, we should sit properly and leave a comfortable place for them. When we speak to them, we should not raise our voice nor talk before they start speaking, nor interrupt them. If we walk with them on the street, we should take care that their way is easy and make sure to walk at their pace.
- 1. Tabrasi, Mashkat al-Anwar, a chapter on respecting the old.